Sept. 12, 1997

Boilermakers Sweep Southwest Texas State

By Tom Schott

SALT LAKE CITY - Last weekend the Purdue volleyball team equalled the program's best start in four years. This weekend it is going back one year further. The upstart Boilermakers pushed their record to 6-1 with a 15-5, 16-14, 15-11 win over

Southwest Texas State in first-round play of the Utah Classic at Crimson Court. In 1982 the Boilermakers won seven of their first eight matches en route to finishing 17- 13 for the second-most victories by a Purdue team this decade.

"It's nice that we are accomplishing some things that haven't been done at Purdue in awhile, but I'm more concerned that we keep improving and play at a consistent level," coach Joey Vrazel said. "We did some good things in this match, but we still need to become a better blocking team and cut down on our unforced errors."

Sarah Emke, with two all-tournament team honors to her credit already in 1997, got off to a good start for her third with a career-high 20 kills on a .457 hitting percentage. She also had five blocks and four service aces.

"Our passers did a good job, which made it easy for us to run our offense," Emke said. "All I have to do then is hit the ball. I give a lot of credit to our passers and to Taryn (Catlin, the Boilermakers' setter.)"

Bev Krupa added 16 kills for Purdue, which hit at a snappy .373 clip as a team. Kelly Colangelo and Katie Gibbons both had 14 kills to go with eight digs.

"That's exactly the type of balanced offense we need to run every time out," Catlin said. "Everyone was on tonight, and you can see how efficient we are when that happens."

The Boilermakers held the Bobcats (2-5) to a .212 hitting percentage and finished with more blocks (8-4) and more digs (46-31).

Southwest Texas had an early 2-1 lead in Game 1 before the Boilermakers strung together seven straight points to build an 8-2 advantage. Purdue needed seven sideouts before it scored again, but four kills by Colangelo got her team back on track. A nifty backrow attack by Krupa accounted for the 14th point before Krupa and Jennie Williams teamed up on a block to end the game.

It was 5-2 in favor of the Boilermakers in Game 2 when the Bobcats used a four-point spurt that was aided by a couple of Purdue miscues to forge ahead 6-5. It eventually was tied 14-all before the Boilermakers finally ended the marathon game on a block by Catlin and Emke and a kill by Emke.

In Game 3 Southwest Texas broke out of the gate at 4-1 but could not sustain its momentum. Then Purdue turned up its blocking and went up to a 6-4 count. The Boilermakers later appeared in command at 14-6, but the Bobcats made it a bit interesting with a 5-0 run.

Purdue continues tournament play Saturday against Weber State at 1:30 p.m. and Utah at 8:30 p.m.

Utah Classic -- Salt Lake City
Friday
Purdue def. Southwest Texas State 15-6, 16-14, 15-11 Utah vs. Weber State. late

Saturday
Southwest Texas State vs. Utah, 11 a.m.
Purdue vs. Weber State, 1:30 p.m.
Southwest Texas State vs. Weber State, 6 p.m. Purdue vs. Utah, 8:30 p.m.